Not your average type

Typism exhibition - Grey Street Gallery

An international typography conference will be hosted in Australia for the first time in 67 years, with the Queensland College of Art and Design (QCAD) featuring heavily in the line-up.

ATypI (Association Typographique Internationale) was founded in 1957 to celebrate typography and typeface design, facilitate dialogue with related professional bodies, improve understanding of global typography, and promote typography education.

Connected to the conference will be an exhibition featuring the typography work of 36 artists, displayed as posters viewable in the Grey Street Galley from 10-20 April 2024.

The works have been selected from 1710 pieces of the world’s best lettering, calligraphy and type design featured across nine years of Typism books, curated by QCAD’s Associate Professor Dominique Falla.

Associate Professor Dominique Falla
Associate Professor Dominique Falla

Starting as an online type and lettering community, the annual Typism book project has given many first-time published artists a chance to have their work showcased to a global audience, with contributions coming from Ukraine, the Netherlands, Poland, Bolivia, Germany, Brazil and many more countries.

“I created Typism for my students after realising of lot of them were interested in type and lettering, but didn’t realise it could actually be a career path,” Dr Falla said.

“I started enlisting professional lettering artists to share their career journeys and experiences which led to the idea of curating some of the best type and lettering in the world in a book.

“The poster show is the ‘creme de la crème’ of the thousands of pieces of work published in the book over the last decade.”

Dr David Sargent
Dr David Sargent

With the official opening night of ATypI being hosted at QCAD’s Grey Street Gallery and day one of workshops hosted at Griffith University’s South Bank campus, participants will hear from Dr Falla about her 10-year journey creating the Typism books and community, as well as several other QCAD academics in talks and workshops.

Dr Libbi Reed
Dr Libbi Reed

Senior lecturer Dr David Sargent teaches visual communication courses related to publication layout, the history of type, typeface design, and expressive lettering, and will speak about a typeface he has revived.

Graphic design teaching fellow Dr Libbi Reed will lead a workshop introducing participants to the concept of visual sense-making through sketch-noting and expressive lettering, providing participants with a comprehensive toolkit for creative expression and effective communication.

Pascale Schmid
Pascale Schmid

Doctoral candidate and sessional tutor Pascale Schmid used to be a flight attendant, and will be sharing her research and journey to designing a typeface for pilots to use in the cockpit.

Finally, QCAD graduate and sessional lecturer Aurelie Maron will close the conference with a keynote speech on how a lifelong love for drawing and a dedication to mastering the art of typography helped her build a thriving community and fulfilling career.

Aurelie Maron
Aurelie Maron

With QCAD recently renamed to reflect its strong design contingent, Dr Falla said the university boasts more type-focused PhD and Masters students than any other Australian Institutions.

“We have a full contingent of type and lettering courses and some of the best type teachers in the world as part of our Bachelor of Design,” she said.

“We’re very proud to be a part of the ATypI conference and can’t wait to see what our students and other artists design next.”